James B. Skewes, whose family bought the paper in the early 1920s, was the editor of the Meridian Star when we were in school and continued as editor into the sixties. (and maybe longer)
I have trouble believing this headline below was printed, but it's written on
the "James Earl Chaney Foundation" website. (scroll to the bottom of the page).
"THE NIGGER WAS FOUND ON TOP" read the August 5, 1964 headlines of the Meridian Star, a local newspaper. While enroute to Meridian, Mississippi the three civil rights workers were stopped by a Neshoba County sheriffs' deputy and turned over to the Ku Klux Klan. They were murdered and their bodies buried in an earthen dam. The 44 day search for their bodies was national and massive. The body of James Chaney was a "mangled mass". The injuries, besides the bullet holes, it was said "could only occur in a high speed airplane crash!"
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…
Opening lines of: